Media Bias Against SNFs Again

The New York Times is at it again, and the reporters don’t want to do some simple math.

Well, well, it looks like The New York Times is at it again. Two weeks ago it had a sensationalist story about residents “held” in nursing facilities. Last weekend, they continued on the theme of the disabled being confined in nursing facilities and ready to go home. The gist of the story was that home and community based care is what the elderly and disabled want (true), and that it is cheaper to boot (not so true). In fact, they cited Washington State as claiming that they can care for seven people at home for the cost of one person in a nursing facility. Really? The Washington Medicaid daily rate averages $200, so that would be $28.57 per day for home care. And exactly how much home healthcare do you think you can get for $28? Not much, probably one visit for an hour and a half. If that is all you need, you never should have gone to a nursing facility in the first place, and you should be sent home. But don’t forget, that $200 daily rate also covers food, utilities, housekeeping, activities, and let’s not forget rent. Yes, no one wants to live in a nursing facility, but to say that one day of skilled nursing can cover seven people with home care is just irresponsible.


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